TN: 2005 Clot de l'Oum Côtes du Roussillon Villages Caramany Saint Bart Vieilles Vignes

2005 Clot de l’Oum Côtes du Roussillon Villages Caramany Saint Bart Vieilles Vignes - France, Languedoc Roussillon, Roussillon, Côtes du Roussillon Villages Caramany (2/10/2016)
Dark, opaque garnet, clean as a whistle on the nose, very nice dark red fruit, fine tannins, iron, iodine, rocky/volcanic, streamlined, sinewy, middle weight, a bottle with a lot of youth still. Delicious, interesting stuff, I always love breaking one of these out. (92 pts.)

I keep trying more recent versions of this wine, but none of the vintages I’ve been able to find (and it’s not very easy) have measured up to this 2005. I’ve heard that the winery changed its picking and winemaking to make this a leaner style, but I just haven’t found any of them as interesting. Thankfully I still have a few more 05s.

Thanks Alan for checking in. Love this wine. One of the rare Garagiste winners. Glad I got a bunch. I think this is just coming into its plateau.

I’ve probably tried around 4 or 5 Clot de l’Oum bottlings over the years, and they always provided an interesting enough experience that wanted me to try another vintage. But like you said, they are difficult to find.

That 2005 convinced me that they were among the best producers in the Roussillon. They changed their style later on, around 2009 I think and the grapes started to be picked much earlier to make pretty high-acid wines with greenness. I didn’t like them much. Although the pure Carignan seemed to suit the style better than the others.

However, I bumped into the owners at Millesime Bio in Montpellier last month and tasted through the current releases and I felt the wines had swung back to the style I liked. So if you see some 2014s around, I would suggest buying them.

Although I am a S France wine lover, mainly Languedoc, I am always on the lookout for CdR. Not much to choose from in my area alas.

Mark, I too discovered this wine through Garagiste, when they offered it in 2007. Bought 3 bottles, opened one a year or so later and really loved it and figured it had a lot of potential. In 2009 someone must have decided they didn’t like it and put a case on Winebid. I bought 6 for $20, then the remaining 6 a few weeks later for $15. Have been opening one every year or two, wish I had another case at those prices. Every time I drink one, I just laugh at how much pleasure I’m getting from the wine vs. some crazy expensive $300 bottle.

Jon, I’m really pleased to hear that you felt this wine was such high quality. I obviously can’t get the range of experience and exposure to the wines that you do, great to know that I was able to stumble on this one. I think I tried the 2008 and 2010 models, and found them lacking in body and interest, so haven’t tried searching. They are nearly impossible to find here anyway, so it was actually a bit of a relief. But I’ll definitely keep my eyes open for the 2014.

I met a San Francisco importer hovering around their area at Vinisud in 2005 who couldn’t speak French so I took him to the Clot de l’Oum stand and did the translation. He started importing them. I can’t remember his name and to be honest would not publicise it if I did because 2 years later when I asked him if he’d like to try my wines said “No thanks, I’m happy with the one Roussillon producer “I discovered” at Vinisud and it’s a hard sell”.

Garagiste is another story. Twice I sent them samples and they said they wanted to import the wines but by the time they got round to making an order the wines they wanted had all sold months ago. That’s a big problem with their model and the kind of wineries they want to promote. You can’t keep a good small producer hanging for 9 months.

There are dozens of producers like Clot de l’Oum in the Roussillon. The US market is difficult for us but hopefully there are enough courageous importers and retailers to seek them out. I’m finally in NY with a new importer who is achieving great things. I’m flying over in March for a week and she has lined up several exciting tastings. So let’s see.

Please let us know when the wines become available here. If they are anything like this one, I would absolutely be interested. And yes, it is a very hard sell. No one knows the wines, they don’t get reviewed or scored, they are not Burgundy, Bordeaux, or Napa. I have enough trouble bringing other great wines to events with wine geeks who only want to drink $300 Burgundy as it is, I would be banned if I brought one of these :wink: It’s actually quite sad.

I tasted the 2014 Cine Panettone blanc at the weekend and confirm it’s a lovely bright minerally wine. As an unpleasant aside, for some unknown reason, Clot de l’Oum’s 30 year old Syrah vineyard was vandalised last week by some one. They had cut through all the vines trunks just below the cordon, effectively killing them. No idea why.

One way to piss off the neighbours…


Can’t have been Eric Monne’ manning the stand, then. I remember him being perfectly fluent in English. Used to work for the European Patent Office in the Hague for quite a number of years, IIRC.